Updated: 08/08/2013 12:07 AM
Created: 08/07/2013 12:25 PM KSTP.com
By: Maricella Miranda
Shutterfly wants to build its newest office in Shakopee.
The Internet-based photo and publishing company is meeting Wednesday night with the Shakopee City Council to discuss plans to build a 217,000-square-foot office by 2014.
Shutterfly, which is based in Redwood City, Calif., says the expansion would generate an estimated 329 jobs over the next two to five years - with 201 employees hired by next year, according to the city. The average annual wage for workers would be $18.78 per hour.
Seasonal employees would add 204 more full-time equivalent positions.
"We definitely think that these jobs will fill a niche that isn't being filled right now," said Samantha DiMaggio, economic development coordinator in Shakopee.
As part of the move, the company is asking the city and the county to approve a nine-year property tax abatement, meaning Shutterfly wouldn't pay those taxes during that time.
Preliminary building assessed values at the nearly 23-acre site are between $12 million and $16 million. The Dean Lakes development, where the building would be, is at U.S. Highway 169 and Canterbury Road.
The city's abatement value would be between $569,078 to $758,771 over nine years. Shutterfly also wants the deal to include city sewer access charge credits.
Scott County leaders plan to vote on their part of the abatement, valued between $551,159 to $734,878 in county taxes, on Aug. 20. Shutterfly also is asking the county to help pay for connecting to the county's fiber infrastructure.
The total proposed project is estimated to cost more than $60.4 million. Ryan Companies, of Minneapolis, plans to invest about $26 million in the deal. Shutterfly would invest $34 million.
As part of a triple-net lease, Ryan Companies would own the property, while Shutterfly would pay for the rent, taxes and maintenance for the building, DiMaggio said.
Shakopee city staff have recommended the project based on the number of jobs Shutterfly will create, according to the city. More information about the plan can be found here.
The city also is planning to apply for state grants through the Department of Employment and Economic Development that would help Shutterfly pay for equipment at the new site. In return, the company would be on the hook to generate new jobs.
"I'm really hoping this will move along smoothly," DiMaggio said.
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